PIAC probes GNPC’s acquisition of property in Takoradi

PIAC probes GNPC’s acquisition of property in Takoradi
Source: Ghana| JoyBusiness | JAD
Date: 11-09-2018 Time: 07:09:41:am

The Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) has written to GNPC to seek further clarifications of some of the issues relating to the acquisition of a $7.5 million property in Takoradi.

PIAC says “has taken notice of recent revelations in sections of the Ghanaian media regarding GNPC’s acquisition of a residential property in Takoradi from Global Haulage Company Limited (GHCL), a company in which the CEO of GNPC, Dr K.K. Sarpong is said to have interest.” 

“The Committee has also taken due notice of GNPC’s response to the allegation of conflict of interest, levelled against the Corporation’s CEO [Dr. Kofi Kodua Sarpong] with respect to the transaction,” a press statement from PIAC noted. 

Chief Executive of the GNPC, Dr. Kofi Kodua Sarpong who once acted as the CEO of GHCL,  ordered the "urgent" transfer of the funds to the Global Haulage Company Limited in a memo obtained by Joy FM.

Read: GNPC buys $7.5m property from CEO's former company

GNPC-memo

But Dr. Sarpong says despite his past association with the transport entity, the relationship did not influence the negotiation and purchase of the multimillion-dollar property in a gated community at Chapel Hill in the Western Region capital, Takoradi.

“I had been connected with Global Haulage, but I must tell you that the transaction is above board, all valuation reports by relevant agencies went through the board of directors [and] the board of directors’ subcommittee on properties looked at it and recommended [its suitability] to the board,” he explained on Joy FM's Super Morning Show.

Read: GNPC boss admits links with a company that sold $7.5m property to GNPC

Dr. Kofi Kodua Sarpong

Despite the explanation, PIAC says it "is concerned about these developments, because GNPC is a recipient of petroleum revenues, and falls within the Committee’s oversight mandate as stipulated under Sect. 52 of the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA), 2011 (Act 815).”

Pursuant to PIAC's mandate "the Committee has written to GNPC to seek further clarifications of some of the issues that lie at the heart of the allegations." 

The statement signed by the Chairman of PIAC, Dr Steve Manteaw, said: “The responses and documentation provided by GNPC will enable PIAC come to an informed position on the matter.”

PIAC report

The PIAC report established that, in 2017, Ghana lifted four parcels of crude oil from the TEN Field. These were in March, June, October, and December. 

In all the four cases, the sales returns reported substantial price deviations from the Government’s benchmark price, Jubilee, and BRENT achieved prices. 

The March lifting from TEN, for instance, had a negative price differential of almost $5/bbl against Jubilee, and slightly over $2/bbl against BRENT. 

In October, the performance of the TEN crude was worse. It suffered a negative price differential of US$6/bbl against both Jubilee and BRENT. 

PIAC in its 2017 Annual Report, therefore, recommended that GNPC took another look at its pricing and marketing policy for TEN crude, to eliminate the significant price difference with Jubilee crude. Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC).

PIAC commends Finance Minister

Meanwhile, in another matter related to the underpricing of Ghana’s crude oil from the TEN Field, PIAC wishes to commend the Minister of Finance for directing GNPC to take immediate steps to address the anomaly in the pricing of the crude oil to save the country from further revenue losses. 

The directive said to be contained in a memo of July 2018 responds adequately to Recommendation 10 of PIAC’s 2017 Annual Report

 

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